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WEB EXCLUSIVE: No one hurt in two-alarm fire in Pell Lake

October 20, 2010 | 12:31 PM
By Steve Targo


Pell Lake — Several area fire departments responded to a two-alarm blaze Tuesday, Oct. 19, at 5:09 a.m. on W1039 Evergreen Road.

On Wednesday, Oct. 20, Bloomfield-Genoa City Fire Chief Fred Schalow and Capt. Jeremy Tamillo said no one was injured. Schalow said the fire is not suspicious.

Schalow and Tamillo said there was one person in the home at the time of the fire — James Minogue, 44, the owner of the one-story, ranch-style home.

"The homeowner was standing in the driveway, talking with police officers," Tamillo said about what he saw when he arrived at the scene at 5:14 a.m.

He said smoke emitted from the roof, but no flames were visible. According to the Bloomfield-Genoa City Fire and Rescue Department report, a fire burning in the fireplace of the home started the blaze. The ceiling joists ignited first.

Schalow, who arrived at the scene around 6 a.m., and Tamillo said the blaze was contained within the attic.

Tamillo said there was some smoke and fire damage to the home.

"But most of the damage came from ensuring the fire didn't spread," he said.

"They did a good save," Schalow said about on-scene firefighters. "The house is still standing. Unless you see the holes in the roof, you couldn't even tell there was a fire."

So why was it a two-alarm fire?

"Manpower," Schalow said.

Tamillo said only six Bloomfield-Genoa City firefighters responded to the call. According to Schalow, it's standard practice for his department to use the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System in situations such as this fire call.

"That's why we have MABAS," Schalow said. "Pretty much every time we have a structure fire, we call MABAS because of the additional personnel that we get and the safety aspect for our personnel and the property owners. It's extra resources, too."

Fire departments from Lake Geneva, Twin Lakes and the towns of Randall and Burlington were called to the scene. Also responding were personnel from fire departments in Illinois, from Richmond, Spring Grove, Wonder Lake and Hebron.

EMS from the town of Linn and the Racine Fire Bells also responded.

See next week's Regional News for more about another recent house fire which remains under investigation and how the Bloomfield-Genoa City Fire and Rescue Department is putting a FEMA grant to good use.

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